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Health

New French COVID lockdown may have to go beyond December 1: government adviser

FILE PHOTO: French immunologist Jean-Francois Delfraissy addresses the media in the courtyard of the French Interior Ministry in Paris, France March 13, 2020. Ludovic Marin/Pool via REUTERS

PARIS (Reuters) - France’s new national lockdown, aimed at curbing the resurgence of COVID-19, may have to be extended beyond its initial deadline of Dec. 1, government scentific adviser Professor Jean-François Delfraissy said on Thursday.

President Emmanuel Macron said late on Wednesday that France might start to ease back lockdown measures once COVID infections fell back to about 5,000 per day from around 40,000 per day at present.

But Delfraissy said he did not think that could be achieved by Dec. 1.

“By December 1, we will not be at 5,000 contaminations per day. I can tell that to you straight away today. We will need more time,” said Delfraissy, who heads the scientific council that advises the French government on the pandemic.

Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Andrew Heavens

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